What is life like in a care home? | Care UK

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Care home life

Care home life

Life in our care homes is all about helping people to enjoy more independent and fulfilling lives.

We want residents and their families to look upon our care homes as their own - from the very first day they move in. So, as a valued family member you are welcome to drop in anytime and to stay as long as you like. Our homes have active relative and resident committees to encourage feedback, to make plans and to share information. We'd love you to get as involved as you can.

Moving in and forging relationships

We understand that a loved one's move into a care home can be a difficult time for everyone involved. We try to make the move as easy as we can and have prepared a moving in guide, which contains useful and practical things to consider.

It helps if families and loved ones get to know members of our care team ahead of their moving in date. So, we recommend that you spend time visiting the home, talking to staff and getting to know other residents. These visits will help your loved one settle in more quickly and you will have the peace of mind that they are in safe hands and being well cared for.

Home comforts

Step inside a Care UK care home and be prepared to leave the typical view of care homes behind. Our homes are modern, spacious and provide a comfortable and safe environment for our residents to live in. All our homes offer a warm and friendly welcome, with cosy and inviting lounges and communal spaces. Residents are welcome to personalise their rooms to make them feel more like home, and many of our homes even have their own pets, from cats to budgies, to create that homely feel.

Enjoying good food

Just as in many family homes, meal times are a special part of the day in our care homes. Meals provide a chance for residents to come together, enjoy good food and socialise with friends. We understand the importance of good nutrition and provide fresh, seasonal healthy meals which cater for individual tastes, dietary needs (both medical and allergies) and cultural preferences. Many homes use fresh local produce and some grow their own food in their gardens.

Residents are encouraged to contribute to menu plans to ensure everyone gets to eat the food they enjoy. Our chefs often sit down with residents to chat about what they’re enjoying and not enjoying. Morning and afternoon teas, complete with tasty sweet treats (often baked by residents) are common in our homes. We change our menus regularly to keep things interesting, and there are drinks and snacks available at all times.

Staying active

We support residents to follow their hobbies and interests and will do everything we can to help residents to continue enjoying their favourite activities. Our regular activities range from flower arranging and gentle exercise classes to quizzes, bingo and art classes. Most of our homes have landscaped gardens which are perfect to relax in or stroll around when the weather is warmer. Residents with green fingers - or those who have never lifted a trowel in their life - are welcome to help out with weeding, sowing and general upkeep.

Care UK care homes have strong links with their local communities, and many are visited by entertainers and performers as well as local schoolchildren who sing and perform for residents or simply chat to them to learn more about their lives. If a resident wants to go to a nearby club or society, we'll support them to do so. What's more, many homes organise day trips for residents, and many are rightfully proud of the seasonal events and parties that they put on for friends, family and people from the local community. Residents play a key part in planning, organising and making things for these events.

We are entirely driven by the needs and interests of our residents and we base everything we do around our activity based care ethos. Read our As Easy as ABC Guide to find out more.

Supporting the whole family

Joining in with an activity at the care home is a great way to get the most out of your visit with a loved one. Taking part in something together helps maintain strong relationships and you’ll find new ways of relating to each other. This is particularly beneficial if your loved one is living with dementia.

Our ‘Listen, talk, connect’ booklet is a guide full of practical hints and tips to support friends, relatives and carers to communicate with people living with dementia.

Our new purpose-built care homes

We are currently undertaking a large programme of new build care homes, each providing a wide range of care services, including nursing, residential, dementia and respite care.

Our newest homes have their own cinema, coffee shop and hair salon, creating a lively community atmosphere where residents can enjoy the best possible quality of life. They can catch their favourite movie (complete with popcorn), enjoy a cappuccino and a slice of cake with visitors, or a quick pamper and a chat with the hairdresser. The homes also have beautifully furnished en-suite bedrooms, bistro-style dining areas, activity rooms, comfortable sitting areas and lovely landscaped gardens.

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